2 heaping tablespoons tarragon, dried
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 cup red wine vinegar
Place above ingredients in a small sauté pan. Cook over medium heat until all liquid has evaporated but mixture is still moist, about 7 to 10 minutes. Set aside.
In the top of a double boiler, add egg yolks, lemon, salt, cayenne pepper and 2 tablespoons of the hot water. Stir constantly until the consistency of pancake batter. Remove from heat. Do NOT over-cook.
Alternate adding butter and water until ¾ of the water is gone and all of the butter is utilized. Scrape into a warmed but not hot serving container. Add the tarragon reduction. Keep at room temperature – do not re-heat, or allow to become cooled.
Place asparagus spears on top of halibut, salmon or steak. Pour béarnaise sauce over all. (Note: Once tarragon reduction is added to the hollandaise sauce, it becomes a béarnaise sauce).